Roundup: 18 known COVID cases, $2.1M for the arts, spotlighting missing & murdered Indigenous women, C.B.’s unique mobile flu clinic, more hungry Nova Scotians

As of yesterday (Nov. 5), Nova Scotia has 18 known cases of COVID-19, with one new case reported in the Central Zone in the latest government update. So far, the province has had 114,607 negative test results, 1,119 confirmed COVID-19 cases, and 65 deaths. 

Emergency funding for the arts
With countless performance opportunities lost to public health restrictions, arts organizations are desperate for financial support, as Neptune Theatre artistic director Jeremy Webb highlighted in this recent Halifax Magazine interview.

Suzanne Lohnes-Croft

The provincial government is responding with $2.1 million in funding. “The sector is an important economic and social contributor to communities across the province,” says culture minister Suzanne Lohnes-Croft in a press release. “This… will help organizations adapt and maintain operations.”

The COVID-19 Emergency Support Program for Arts and Culture Organizations is a one-time, application-based program for organizations that either receive operating funding or regular project funding from the department. Organizations can apply online.

Remembrance Day memories
Two years ago, Halifax Magazine photographer Tammy Fancy and I travelled to Belgium for events marking the centenary of the First World War’s conclusion, witnessing poignant commemorations on the very sites where conflict unfolded. As Nov. 11 approaches, we’re sharing memories of that visit and its many Nova Scotian connections. —T.J.A.

George Price

In Nova Scotia, few recall a soldier named George Price from Falmouth. But in Mons, Belgium, his memory lives on: a prominent bridge and the local elementary school both bear his name.

In that town, a German sniper shot Price dead on Nov. 11, 1918 at 10:58 a.m. He was the last British Empire soldier killed in combat during the First World War.

His senseless death has become a metaphor. In 2018 I wrote that it’s not “really, or at least not exclusively, about Price… Had he escaped the war unharmed, he would have returned to the farm and only his descendants would know his name. He lives on as symbol. His cruel death, two minutes before peace, underlines the banal brutality of war and the fragility of life.”

Learn more about how Belgium honours his memory in this Halifax Magazine post, originally published November 2018.

Spotlighting missing and murdered Indigenous women
A recent Red Dress ceremony at the Nova Scotia Community College in Pictou is a powerful reminder of Canada’s failure to get justice for the many missing and murdered First Nations women.

The ceremony included an explanation of the significance of the red dress (a symbol of the forgotten women), a smudge ceremony, and healing music. “It means so much to me,” says dancer Francis McGraw. “People should realize how important it is.” Heather Brimicombe reports for The Pictou Advocate.

One-of-a-kind flu clinic
As flu season approaches, health-care workers in Cape Breton are pre-emptively fighting the disease with a mobile flu clinic, the first of its kind in Canada. Pharmacist Michael Hatt is taking the repurposed ambulance to communities around the island, vaccinating 80–100 people daily.

“It’s working great,” Hatt says. “We’re targeting businesses that have employees that need to get the flu shot but might not be able to get out during business hours… We’re targeting the areas that don’t have a pharmacy, where the residents might have a hard time getting in to get their flu shot.” Jake Boudrot has the details for The Reporter.

The growing hunger
As the pandemic drags on, the poverty gap widens and more Nova Scotians than ever are relying on food banks to keep their families fed.

Colchester Food Bank spokeswoman Leanne Roberts has watched the need swell. “On average, we are currently serving 400+ households per month,” she says. That’s why, despite COVID-19, the organization is proceeding with its annual holiday food drive, with modifications to obey public health rules. Learn how you can help in this Hub Now story by Raissa Tetanish.

Need to know
Know a community group, good cause, or inspiring local story we should share? Email the editor.

This story was originally published in Halifax Magazine.

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